Alke Boessiger, who has been nominated by the UNI World Executive Board as the Deputy General Secretary of UNI Global Union, delivered a strong speech on gender equality at the 5th UNI World Women’s Conference in Liverpool today.
Boessiger emphasised the woman’s struggle – the right to be educated, right to work, right to work/life balance and to be paid equally – in the current patriarchal world.
In order to break this glass ceiling ,which is so often made of steel, Boessiger highlighted the importance of trade unions in creating a network of solidarity and support for women, and reflected upon the legacy of her own trade union experience which still lives on today. The UNI mentoring programme is of particular importance in enhancing gender equality and empowering women.
Boessiger also highlighted a woman’s right to choose, and congratulated the women who campaigned for the referendum on abortion in the Republic of Ireland and the decriminalisation of abortion in Argentina.
However, Boessiger stressed that it was not only the responsibility of women to achieve gender equality, as our male counterparts must also take up the gender equality mantle.
“Women’s rights are human rights,” Boessiger underlined, “and we must act together to stop violence against women and girls and achieve equal pay for work of equal value.”
With an all women team soon to be leading the organisation, gender equality will be further embedded in everything that UNI Global Union do.
Boessiger summed up this sentiment: “Let’s not be quiet, let’s stand together as one.”